◈ Episode 446. I will return when the time is right (3)

Marcelo looks at Claudi.

Marcelo said, ‘Magic that denies the history of magic’.

Even my 『Reversal Magic』, which was said to reverse the common sense of Magic Tower and magic, failed to reverse some things. Such was the case with Claudi’s marks on the territory and mansions.

Reversal magic is not omnipotent. As time passes, the hand stains, warmth, and emotions engraved cannot be reversed. Even if I try to imitate it, I don’t even know what it was like when Claudi was intact.

The House of Claudi.

They have the power to control a continent.

I can’t even begin to imagine the mission that brought them here.

Isn’t it obvious?

‘Not so long ago.’

The history of the House of Claudi.


I dismissed it as just my dark history.

But the moment I recognized Grandfell, I changed my mind.

Therefore, at this moment.

I gazed out at the landscape with a solemnity that could not be more different.

Grandfell spoke, not me.

“I don’t know what kind of scenery you will like.”

Claudi territory was unrealistically vast.

In the words of the Arcanians, it was a legendary place, beyond description……. Fortunately, the players had an easier way to describe it.

‘Hidden Piece.’

In the vastness of Hidden Piece, I found a place that felt even more disconnected from the rest of the world, even in the Claudi territory. Surrounded by trees, to use a clichéd analogy…….

A mysterious place where it would not be strange to have a World Tree.

I shift my gaze to the jewelry box containing the silver hair.

The story behind it is as I suspected.

In the past, a group of Shadow Mercenaries was commissioned to assassinate Claudi Young Lady.

As proof, they cut off a strand of hair from the would-be Grandfell sister.

According to Kichi.

-“The hair was sold at an auction organized by Oak Auctions. However, it never made it to the auction stage. Ulrich, the owner of Oak Auctions, bought the hair…….”

Ulrich of the Oak Auction.

The name sounds familiar.

There’s a connection.

A top-tier Spacetime quest.

I was the one who had accepted the request and undertaken the Mythic Quest, and along the way, I had gained access to the past and resolved my misunderstanding with Ulrich, who was terrified by the Seven Deadly Sins Pride.

‘Is this another butterfly effect?’

Ulrich had bought and kept Claudi’s hair out of loyalty to Claudi. Thank you, Ulrich. I’m glad to hear it, though I’d have preferred to meet you face to face.

Time in the Arcana continent, four times faster than reality.

‘It is what it is.’

It was the work of the previous generation of Shadow Mercenaries. Ulrich wasn’t the Ulrich I knew, either, only the name had been passed down. The Ulrich I knew seemed to have died long ago.

I organized my thoughts.

‘Anyway, thank you very much. Ulrich.’

Always the same posture.

The same expression, with no hint of emotion.

I expressed my gratitude on behalf of Grandfell.


I might be the cause of all this.

It pains me to say this, but…….

but it’s a step forward.

“Nevertheless, I hope you are at peace.”

I set the jewelry box down, feeling that for the first time, I had made some amends for the cruelty that had befallen Grandfell. I covered it with soil.


By my side were the members of the Shadow Mercenaries, including Kichi. It wasn’t their commission, but they seemed to feel a sense of responsibility as Shadow Mercenaries.

If only.

“Damn it…….”

Even Rockid, the gruff one, was keeping his head down and his emotions in check?

Of course, as I said, I had no intention of holding them accountable.

It never was.

With Grandfell’s sister’s hair and Akshan’s artifacts in hand, it’s only natural that even the smallest regrets would fade away.

Belated mourning.

‘It’s going to be shaky.’

Grandfell was the same Grandfell I knew.

He didn’t spend much time mourning.

His sister’s hair came back to Claudi territory.

As if that was just the beginning.


I turned and walked toward my scheduled appointment.


There’s something that’s been bothering me since earlier.

‘……So what do you want to say, everyone?’


A group of Shadow Mercenaries is following me.

At first, I thought they were just being clever.

They realize I’m honoring my sister.

I thought they had noticed and followed me without saying a word.

‘Because Granfell doesn’t have the personality to talk loudly’

I didn’t ask why.

Ever since that silent companion left the mansion.

This meant that it continued until we returned to the mansion.

The stares stung.

“The Shadow Mercenaries!”

“And Commander in Chief Lee Hoyeol is here?”

“……Is something happening here too?”

There were players in the Claudi territory.

The Imperial Capital, Antonium, had been added to the coordinates of the Magic Tower Portal, but that didn’t mean that the coordinates of Claudi territory had disappeared. There were players who stopped by for sightseeing, mostly because it was my territory.

‘…… Speaking of which.’

I used to get harassed by my sisters for that.

-Hey, Hoyeol, when are we going to show that villa??

-You’ve made it big, Hoyeol? You’ve already got your own house.

-I’m looking forward to being able to go once the cataclysm is over haha.

Scenes from the Claudi territory that players brought to reality.

‘If I’d known this would happen, I would have added a no-filming rule to the rules.’


And the Claudi territory I saw on TV was too much even for me, its lord.

Especially the mansion, which was filmed very slowly.

Hundreds of millions of views.

There were a lot of players looking for Claudi territory over Antonium.

And to those players.

I was also providing something rare to see.

……This will accelerate the illusion.

Friendship with the Shadow Mercenaries at its peak.

If I was happy, I was happy.

Anyway, that means I’ve gained some influence with the Shadow Mercenaries, but I couldn’t think of anything to use that influence and friendship for.

Kingdom of Yusra, Magic Tower, Frost, Antonium……. Thanks to a lot of experience. I learned that once you reach the maximum amount of Influence and Friendship in a territory, you can activate the [Authority] function.

‘I don’t know if it’s a territory.’

But there was no such thing as a [Authority] system for relationships and friendships with a group. Sure, there was visible loyalty, but…….

‘It didn’t mean much.’

That is, when I asked for something or ordered something.

Can you think of any of them who refused…….

I can’t really think of a single one.

‘Besides, they’re such free spirits.’

The greater the faith, the greater the shock.

So I didn’t expect much from the Shadow Mercenaries.

The rulers of the underworld, the arch-sinners of the Arcana continent?

I mean, I was content to stay out of trouble.


“Commander-in-Chief, I have something to tell you.”

Under a barrage of stares.

A request for a private audience upon returning to the mansion.

Wolfe, sitting across from me, opened his mouth heavily.

“I will listen.”

I wonder what he’s going to say.

To be free to operate in the Empire.

He’s not asking me to release his wanted list, is he?

I’m quite capable of that, actually. As I said, I’ve activated [Authority] in the Empire. Whether you’re a thief or a war criminal, it’s not hard to clear your name.


He’s a principled man with no sense of flexibility.

As long as Grandfell’s eyes are glazed over.

‘I cannot grant such a favor.’

But there was something else.

It’s hard to say no so bluntly.

I swallowed hard.

“The result of gathering opinions from all members.”

Thankfully, it wasn’t a request.

“It has been decided to disband the Shadow Mercenaries.”

This was a problem because I hadn’t really imagined it, but……!


Arcana today.

The studio was a war zone.

It had to be.

“Ms. Hyun. We’ve passed 72 hours of airtime……!”

A relay program that never ends.

It was.

After the Evil Eyes of the Ten Thrones appeared in reality.

“The news is that the Evil Eyes that floated off the southern coast of Jeju Island has been shot down. But at the same time, the rift that was predicted to collapse collapsed, and another Evil Eye…….”

The reality was full of sudden events, and accidents.

Hyun Yongseok seemed to be having a déjà vu moment.

He had just gotten his first job as a producer.

“Do you remember? The atmosphere was just like this.”

“I’m sorry, but that was before I joined the company…….”

“Oh, really? It’s been that long already.”

The cataclysmic early days.

The collapsing rift.

It was like seeing humanity’s helplessness all over again.

But the situation was distinctly different then and now.

“But we haven’t changed over the years.”

Hyun Yongseok bit his thin lips.

“……Because we know it, but we can’t stop it.”

In the early days.

It was the players of the Awakened Arcana continent who saved the chaotic human race. But even those players were struggling against the current threat.

Of course, there was still a hero.

Lee Hoyeol.

He had saved the world from despair many times with his mere appearance, but he was only ‘him’. As big as Lee Hoyeol’s presence was, it was only natural that the void he left behind was also significant.

My lips bite naturally.

‘I know it’s not your fault.’

I had no intention of blaming the other players.

No, dare I?

I was the general manager of Today Arcana.

‘Even though I’m not a player.’

How players enjoy wealth and fame.

They live a glamorous life that he, a salaryman, can’t even dream of.

Hyun Yongseok had seen it all up close.

However, Hyun Yongseok never once truly envied them.

Even if he was easily fooled by their glamorous lives.

A prompt that comes to mind.

-A member Shinhwa Guild official was killed during the raid on the Collapse Rift.

It’s only after an event like this that they realize.

All the rewards they’ve earned have been at the cost of their lives.

Hyun Yongseok thought to himself.

‘Our peace is due to their sacrifice.’

He did.

To honor their memory, Hyun Yongseok could not rest.

But Arcana did not take it easy.

Newly updated prompt.

-Please check the Arcana official website.


Was this an emergency update?

If so, we need to report it quickly.

Hyun Yongseok quickly accessed the Arcana homepage and was stunned.

“Why now?”

A Spacetime Duel!

It was the same content that Lee Hoyeol and Sword Saint had shown. Normally, they would have organized an emergency broadcast right away. Nothing guarantees ratings like an exciting duel.

But that’s the way things are.

“Jesse Heinness……?”

I had a target.

Jesse, she’s not the kind of person who would ever step forward.

She’d come forward for a reason.

Like the one that brought down the Evil Eye in New York.

Which made the whereabouts of the duel all the more intriguing.

What Jesse encountered was a bizarre creature that was neither human nor plant.


“What the hell do you think you’re doing?”

I don’t know.

If, and only if, the creature wins…….

Reality will be even more chaotic.

And our dependence on Lee Hoyeol will only increase.

Then, naturally.

‘The burden Lee Hoyeol carry.’

It will become even heavier.

Hyun Yongseok sometimes thought about it.

The world line where Lee Hoyeol would experience defeat or failure for the first time.

As for the ending of that imagination…….

It was always truly terrible.

“It would have already been destroyed.”

So I couldn’t imagine the burden he was carrying.

So he could only hope.

For humanity, for the Arcana continent.

That they would no longer depend on him so much.

It was then.


The prompt updated once more.

But Hyun Yongseok didn’t react easily.

Yeah, that was unexpected.


Encroached upon by malice.

Damn reality.

Another group of heroes to reverse it.

-News from players on the Arcana continent.

-Updated new world messages.

-The natural enemy of demons has returned to the Arcana continent.

Hyun Yongseok shouted.

“If the natural enemy of demons is……? No way, Akshan!”

tl/n: I think Shadow Mercenary disbanded and joined Akshan